Circular Economy for Flexible Packaging - REFLEX

Lead Participant: Axion Recycling Ltd.

Abstract

Flexible packaging such as plastic bags, sweet wrappers, frozen food bags and pouches makes up 32% of consumer plastic packaging in the UK, however virtually all of this 556,000 tonnes ends up in landfill. By contrast 58% of plastic bottles are recycled. Our vision is to achieve a circular economy for flexible packaging and divert it from landfill. To achieve this, innovative recyclable flexible package designs are required, where all the materials used can be reprocessed together. The design will include innovative inks, new barrier polymers, novel packaging designs and a new automated sorting technique. With the backing of Nestle and Unilever, two global brands who see consumer value in offering recyclable packaging, industry-wide guidelines for recyclable packaging will be agreed and disseminated. Each step of the process will be trialled during this project, thus demonstrating to the full supply chain that it is viable to create a circular economy in plastic flexible packaging

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